Platelet basic protein (PBP), connective tissue-activating peptide III (CTAP-III), and platelet factor 4 (PF-4) were purified from human platelet release supernatants by heparin-Sepharose ion-exchange and reversed-phase HPLC, and their neutrophil-activating effects were compared with those of NAP-2, a peptide of 70 amino acids corresponding to part of the sequence of PBP (1) and with sequence homology to NAF/NAP-1. NAP-2-induced elastase release and a rise in cytosolic free Ca2+ at concentrations between 0.3 and 100 nM, and neutrophil chemotaxis at concentrations between 0.03 and 10 nM. It was half as potent as NAF/NAP-1 in inducing exocytosis but showed the same activity in the other responses. By contrast, only minimal if any effects were obtained with PBP, CTAP-III, and PF-4 up to 100 nM. NAP-2 thus appears to behave like a typical chemotactic receptor agonist. It could be generated from PBP and/or CTAP-III released from activated platelets and lead to the accumulation of neutrophils in platelet aggregates.